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cheat

[cheet]
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verb (used with object)
  1. to defraud; swindle: He cheated her out of her inheritance.
  2. to deceive; influence by fraud: He cheated us into believing him a hero.
  3. to elude; deprive of something expected: He cheated the law by suicide.
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verb (used without object)
  1. to practice fraud or deceit: She cheats without regrets.
  2. to violate rules or regulations: He cheats at cards.
  3. to take an examination or test in a dishonest way, as by improper access to answers.
  4. Informal. to be sexually unfaithful (often followed by on): Her husband knew she had been cheating all along. He cheated on his wife.
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noun
  1. a person who acts dishonestly, deceives, or defrauds: He is a cheat and a liar.
  2. a fraud; swindle; deception: The game was a cheat.
  3. Law. the fraudulent obtaining of another's property by a pretense or trick.
  4. an impostor: The man who passed as an earl was a cheat.
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Origin of cheat

1325–75; Middle English chet (noun) (aphetic for achet, variant of eschet escheat); cheten to escheat, derivative of chet (noun)
Related formscheat·a·ble, adjectivecheat·ing·ly, adverbout·cheat, verb (used with object)un·cheat·ed, adjectiveun·cheat·ing, adjective

Synonyms

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Synonym study

1. Cheat, deceive, trick, victimize refer to the use of fraud or artifice deliberately to hoodwink or obtain an unfair advantage over someone. Cheat implies conducting matters fraudulently, especially for profit to oneself: to cheat at cards. Deceive suggests deliberately misleading or deluding, to produce misunderstanding or to prevent someone from knowing the truth: to deceive one's parents. To trick is to deceive by a stratagem, often of a petty, crafty, or dishonorable kind: to trick someone into signing a note. To victimize is to make a victim of; the emotional connotation makes the cheating, deception, or trickery seem particularly dastardly: to victimize a blind man.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

dishonestydeception

Examples from the Web for cheating

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • Does it change the fact that you belong to God; that you are cheating Him out of His own property?

  • I'm not in the habit of cheating, nor of being told that I do, so I was not prepared with an answer.

  • She used to say it was no cheating of the minister to feed the minister's boys.

  • That was Caley's last race; he'd been cheating the undertakers for years.

    Old Man Curry

    Charles E. (Charles Emmett) Van Loan

  • But because of the dual constitution of things, in labor as in life there can be no cheating.

    Essays, First Series

    Ralph Waldo Emerson


British Dictionary definitions for cheating

cheat

verb
  1. to deceive or practise deceit, esp for one's own gain; trick or swindle (someone)
  2. (intr) to obtain unfair advantage by trickery, as in a game of cards
  3. (tr) to escape or avoid (something unpleasant) by luck or cunningto cheat death
  4. (when intr, usually foll by on) informal to be sexually unfaithful to (one's wife, husband, or lover)
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noun
  1. a person who cheats
  2. a deliberately dishonest transaction, esp for gain; fraud
  3. informal sham
  4. law the obtaining of another's property by fraudulent means
  5. the usual US name for rye-brome
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Derived Formscheatable, adjectivecheater, nouncheatingly, adverb

Word Origin

C14: short for escheat
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cheating

n.

"deceptiveness, swindling," 1530s, verbal noun from cheat (v.).

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cheat

v.

mid-15c., "to escheat," a shortening of Old French escheat, legal term for revision of property to the state when the owner dies without heirs, literally "that which falls to one," past participle of escheoir "befall by chance, happen, devolve," from Vulgar Latin *excadere "to fall away," from Latin ex- "out" (see ex-) + cadere "to fall" (see case (n.1)). Also cf. escheat. The royal officers evidently had a low reputation. Meaning evolved through "confiscate" (mid-15c.) to "deprive unfairly" (1580s). To cheat on (someone) "be sexually unfaithful" first recorded 1934. Related: Cheated; cheating.

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cheat

n.

late 14c., "forfeited property," from cheat (v.). Meaning "a deceptive act" is from 1640s; earlier, in thieves' jargon, it meant "a stolen thing" (late 16c.), and earlier still "dice" (1530s). Meaning "a swindler" is from 1660s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper